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Health and Human Services Blue Ribbon Commission

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The 2019 legislature and Governor Tim Walz created the Blue Ribbon Commission on Health and Human Services to develop an action plan for transforming the health and human services system.

Blue Ribbon Commission on Health & Human Services: Executive Summary

Download the executive summary

Next meeting

Blue Ribbon Commission Meeting

Planned engagement


17-member commission in statute

  • 4 – members are appointed by legislature
  • 1 – Commissioner of DHS, Blue Ribbon Commission Co-Chair
  • 1 – Commissioner of MDH, Blue Ribbon Commission Co-Chair
  • 4 – Experts/leaders in health care, social services, long term care and health and human services technology/systems
  • 2 – Leadership in employer and group purchaser activities (not a health plan)
  • 5 – Public or private leadership, cultural responsiveness, and innovation in the area of health and human services

See commission members


  • July - August 2019: Appointments and vendors finalized
  • September 2019: Kick off meeting for Commission
  • Request for public comment
  • September 2019 – June 2020: Commission meetings and stakeholder/community engagement events
  • July 2020: Final draft action plan due
  • July – August 2020: Public comment and review of action plan (August 2020: consideration of public comment)
  • Oct. 1, 2020: Action plan due to legislature and Governor
  • Oct. 2, 2020: Commission expires
  • 2021 Legislative Session: Placeholders for budget and policy proposals
  • July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2023: Implementation of any approved legislative proposals from action plan
  • June 30, 2023: Final evaluation and assumed $100 million reduction of health and human services spending

Commission charge

  1. Increasing administrative efficiencies and program simplification within HHS (includes county/tribal and state role in delivery of HHS)
  2. Reducing health and human services expenditures by addressing cost drivers of state spending (including Medicaid)
    • short term: $100 million by FY 2023 (see rider in session law)
    • long term: undefined by statute
  3. Reducing fraud and improving program integrity in health and human services programs
  4. Improve access to health and human services programs to address geographic, racial, and ethnic disparities


The legislation includes limitations for the recommendations, which includes:

  1. In developing the action plan, the commission shall take into consideration the impact of its recommendations on the existing capacity of state agencies, including staffing needs, technology resources, and existing agency responsibilities; and the capacity of county and tribal partners.
  2. The commission shall not include in the action plan recommendations that may result in loss of benefits for the individuals eligible for state health and human services public programs or exacerbate health disparities and inequities in access to health care and human services.
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